Investing.com – The Japanese yen held weaker in Asia on Friday with no major data due and investors focused on mixed U.S. data and the impact on Federal Resereve policy.
USD/JPY traded at 121.34, up 0.05%, while AUD/USD changed hands at 0.7702, down 0.08% and EUR/USD traded at 1.0622, down 0.13%.
Overnight, the dollar remained broadly lower against a basket of other major currencies on Thursday, after data showed that U.S. retail sales dropped unexpectedly last month although a separate report showed that U.S. jobless claims fell more than anticipated last week.
The Commerce Department reported that retail sales fell 0.6% in February, the third consecutive monthly decline. Economists had forecast in increase of 0.3%.
Core retail sales, which exclude automobiles, gasoline and food were flat following a 0.1% decline in January.
Another report showed that U.S. import prices rose 0.4% in February, snapping seven months of declines, but the report indicated that inflation pressures remained muted due to lower petroleum prices.
At the same time the Labor Department reported that the number people filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell by 36,000 to 289,000 last week, indicating that the recovery in the labor market is continuing to strengthen.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was quoted at 99.16, up 0.04%.
The single currency rebounded against the dollar earlier Thursday as the dollar took a breather from a rally sparked by the diverging monetary policy stance between the Fed and central banks in Europe and Japan.